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Questions to Ask Pharmacist Tech Courses
After you have determined whether you wish to earn a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school options. There are many pharmacist technician programs to pick from in the Chandler AZ area and throughout the USA, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and trade schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Chandler residence. If you are able to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are several other issues that you need to take into consideration so that you may effectively compare schools. The following questions will help you in gathering that information and help you to make your final decision.
Is the Pharmacy Tech College Accredited? Many pharmacy tech colleges and trade schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to provide a comprehensive quality education. Online programs may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance education. Be sure to check that the degree or certificate program as well as the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping guarantee that you get a quality education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Chandler AZ employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but a number of employers prefer that the technicians they employ are certified. The pharmacy technician program needs to prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of job experience. This condition can be met by participating in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Offer Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA requires 1 year of job experience for certification, which may be satisfied by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the programs have a working relationship with Chandler Arizona area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the School Provide Job Placement Help? Getting that initial job in Chandler AZ after graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a difficult undertaking without some assistance. Find out if the colleges you are looking at have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the school has an excellent reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a sizable network of pharmacy contacts where it can refer graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the college they select will need to be within travelling distance of their Chandler AZ home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacy tech school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Chandler AZ area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.